Anzac Day commemorations are an important day in the Newcastle region with many attending the Newcastle Dawn Service at Nobbys Beach as well as other Anzac celebrations. Anzac Day is a day to remember the service and sacrifice of Australian and New Zealand Army Corps landing on the Gallipoli Peninsula in Turkey on 25 April 1915.
More than a hundred years later, we still remember the service of the Anzacs. To commemorate this event, here are details about events in Newcastle, Lake Macquarie and the Hunter. Due to COVID-19, many events have been cancelled or scaled back.
In acknowledgement of this, Newy with Kids has put together a guide to commemorate Anzac Day with your family with a variety of activities to remember the sacrifice made. These include Light Up the Dawn, baking Anzac biscuits, visiting Gallipoli virtually and visiting a local Anzac memorial.
Anzac Day Dawn Service at Nobbys Beach – CANCELLED TO PUBLIC
The Dawn Service at Camp Shortland at Newcastle Foreshore will not be going ahead. After a thorough investigation of the COVID-19 rules and regulations covering the various ANZAC Day Services within the CBD of Newcastle City, the ANZAC Day Committee will not stage the traditional ANZAC Day Services. Community safety is first and foremost.
However, there will be a ANZAC Day Dawn Service (Private Service) which will be broadcast on NBN and live stream from 5am to 6am. People are encouraged to participate in Light Up the Dawn in their driveways at 6a wearing medals, poppies, and sprigs of rosemary – to let Australia’s veterans know that their service and sacrifice will never be forgotten.
Anzac Day March – Hunter Street – CANCELLED TO PUBLIC
The Anzac Day March will not be proceeding. After a thorough investigation of the Covid-19 rules and regulations covering the various ANZAC Day Services within the CBD of Newcastle City, the ANZAC Day Committee will not stage the traditional ANZAC Day March. Community safety is first and foremost.
Other Anzac Day Events in Newcastle
In Newcastle, there are a couple of Anzac Day services and marches.
Adamstown: See Merewether service.
Bar Beach: Cancelled this year
Beresfield: Form up at a vacant land site in Anderson Drive and march to the Beresfield Community War Memorial, situated 200 metres away on the corners of Anderson Drive and Allandale Street.
Hamilton: See Merewether service.
Lambton / New Lambton: Cancelled this year
Merewether: There will be a combined service for Merewether-Hamilton-Adamstown RSL Sub-Branch at Souths Merewether at 8am. Auditorium will be invite-only but livestreamed into downstairs area. Club opens at 7am for breakfast.
Shortland: Dawn service will be held at 5:50am in Memorial Garden on Conmurra Crescent.
Shortland Waters Golf Club is holding an Anzac Day ceremony. Join them in their Remembrance Gardens at 7am for the laying of the wreaths, the Ode of Remembrance with the Last Post follwed by Rouse. Members and guests are welcome.
Stockton: Anzac Day service at 9am at Club Stockton. Ticketed event that is free to attend. Contact club reception to register attendance.
Wallsend: Dawn service at 6am at Wallsend Diggers. Entry tickets are being issued to control the number of people attending to comply with NSW COVID restrictions.
Anzac Day Events in Lake Macquarie
In Lake Macquarie, there are a few Anzac Day services and marches.
Boolaroo-Speers Point: There will be no Anzac Day march or ceremony held this year.
Cardiff: Dawn service will be held at the Cardiff RSL Club at 5am. Due to COVID restrictions, Dawn service will be for invited guests only. Subject to changes without notice. March will be at 4:45am. Due to COVID restrictions, the march will be restricted to Cardiff RSL sub-Branch veterans and form up at corner Main & Macquarie Rd Cardiff then proceed to the Cardiff Memorial at the Cardiff RSL Club.
Charlestown: Anzac Day service will be held at 11am at Lion Park. Bring your own chair.
Dudley: There will be Anzac Day Dawn Service at 5:45am at Dudley Soccer Field. Entry is via Gardener and Pitt Streets. Breakfast to follow ($5).
Pelican: Unfortunately due to COVID-19 restrictions, this year’s dawn service will be a private event exclusively for Sub-Branch guests. Please still pay your respects by having a driveway dawn service. The Club will open to the public from 9am.
Swansea: Private service at 11am for invited guests only inside Swansea RSL club.
Toronto: There will be a dawn service at 6am and morning service at 11am for RSL members in Goffet Park. The public can watch on from afar but need to follow social distancing protocols.
Valentine: Anzac Day service at 12pm at Valentine Bowling Club
Wangi Wangi: Dawn service at 5:30am at Wangi RSL at the Cenotaph. Dawn Service Participants by invitation only and they must register either by QR Code or by sign in form. Spectators must comply with COVID-19 requirements including social distancing. A Gun Fire breakfast will be available by ticket only which will be available from the RSL Club. March from Puna Road at 10am. March Participants are by invite and must register by QR Code or by supplying details on the register form. The March turns left into Dobell Drive and continues until it reaches Watkins Road, then turns left and continues along Watkins Road. The march concludes by turning left into the grounds of the Wangi Wangi RSL Club. The March also includes Historic Military Vehicles, local schools and Scouts as well as Police and Fire Brigade including a Historic Fire Engine with lots of polished brass. Main service at 10:30am will take place next to the Cenotaph at the front of the RSL Club with participants by invitation only and they must register either by QR Code or by sign in form. Spectators must comply with COVID-19 requirements including social distancing.
Anzac Day Events in Maitland & the Hunter Valley
Aberdeen: Dawn Service at 5:30am at 23 Moray Street in Aberdeen
Abermain: Form up on Golbourne Street in Abermain at 8:15am with step off at 8:30 am towards Jeffries Park for Main Service in Park. Once completed at 9:30am, individually move to Bowling & Rec Club.
Cessnock: Dawn Service at 5:45am. Gunfire breakfast at Cessnock Leagues Club Entry by ticket only. A COVID safe plan is in place for all events throughout the day. Electronic/Manual sign-in for all events is mandatory. March will go from Vincent Street, Cooper Street North Ave to Cenotaph in TAFE Park.
Form up outside former Ex-Services Club in Vincent Street at 11am. A special commemorative Service will be held at the War Memorial Veteran Park Aberdare commencing at 9am. The Main Service and wreath laying will commence at the completion of the March approximately 11.40am at the Cenotaph in TAFE Park Cessnock.
East Maitland: No Dawn Service this year. March will form up 8.45am, East Maitland War Memorial Centre March off 9am ,along Newcastle St to East Maitland War Memorial Centre ,led by Maitland City Pipes & Drums Band. The March is for serving members of the Defence Force Veterans and families of deceased members. The ANZAC Service at 9:20am will follow the March. The Catafalque Party led by Commander Cpl Marcus Magor and Guest Speaker Lt Jarred French will be from the School of Infantry Singleton. All current COVID -19 Regulations must be followed at the March & Service, 2 square meters space per person. There will be the QR Code at the War Memorial Centre before the March and several around the War Memorial for everyone to register.
Maitland: Dawn Service at 5:30am at Maitland Cenotaph. Main Service at 10:30am. Marchers form up in Church Street Maitland and march to the World War 1 Cenotaph, in Maitland Park. Marchers consist of: Veterans, Other Service Organisations, Local Schools, Other Organisations(i.e. Bands) and members of the Public.
Scone: Dawn Service at 5:30am at Scone Memorial Swimming Pool. Main Service at Scone Memorial Swimming Pool commencing at 11am following call to ‘formation’. March down Guernsey St to Scone RSL Club
Singleton: There will be a dawn service in Burdekin Park from 5.30am and dawn service at Lone Pine Barracks at 5.30am with gates open from 4.30am. March and assembly at 9.30am at Ryan Avenue before Main Service held in Burdekin Park from 11am.
Anzac Day Events in Port Stephens
Medowie: Dawn service at Lions Memorial Park at 6am is restricted to sub-branch members. Members of the public who attend outside the barrier are asked to socially distance.
Nelson Bay: There will be no dawn service or march this year in Nelson Bay. However, there will a service at 10:30am at Apex Park.
Raymond Terrace – A Dawn Service will be conducted from 0550 – 0620 at the War Memorial in ANZAC Park. “Participants” (officials, invited guests, veterans and their families only) will be required to register on arrival. The public are welcome to “observe” the Service but are reminded that all COVID-19 restrictions must be adhered to including social distancing. Due to COVID-19 restrictions and the limited organisational capacity of the Sub-Branch, no Marches will be held this year. A Main Service will be conducted from 1100 – 1140 at the War Memorial in ANZAC Park. “Participants” (officials, invited guests, veterans and their families only) will be required to register on arrival. The public are welcome to “observe” the Service but are reminded that all COVID-19 restrictions must be adhered to including social distancing.
Tea Gardens – Dawn Service at Marine Drive, Tea Gardens. March at 10am. Main Service at 10 am to be held at ANZAC Park Tea Gardens as per the service guidelines. Covid rules in place for all participants. After the service, head to the Country Club for lunch and comradeship.
Tilligerry: Dawn Service at 5:45am at Tilligerry RSL Sports Club. In the case of bad weather, the service will be conducted inside the Clubs auditorium. Anzac March at 9:30am. 0930 – Forming up at the gates on the Avenue of the Allies 0940 – Steeping off, marching onto Lemon Tree Passage Rd to the Tilligerry RSL Sport club. In the case of bad weather, March will be cancelled and advertised as such on Facebook site and local Facebook pages. Main Service at 10am at Tilligerry RSL Sports Club.
Other Anzac Day Activities
You might also want to read to your kids about Anzac Day. Here’s a selection of children’s books about the Anzacs.
You can also go for a walk along the Newcastle Memorial Walk at Strzelecki Lookout. The walk features steel silhouettes of ANZAC soldiers engraved with 3,860 family names of almost 11,000 known Newcastle and Hunter Valley men and women who enlisted during World War I.
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